Hurricane Irene Not a Boon for Online Mattress Sales

As retailers release August sales figures today and say Hurricane Irene helped give them an ecommerce sales boost, at least one merchant says the storm that rocked the Atlantic coast this weekend caused a huge drop in traffic.

US-Mattress.com says its traffic from Friday, Aug. 26 to Sunday, Aug. 28 sank from a range of 8% in Florida to 57% in Rhode Island per East coast state compared to the prior weekend.

“Our East coast customers had more important things to do last weekend than shop for mattresses, linens, and home d├ęcor,” US-Mattress.com ecommerce manager Brenda Smith said in a press release. “They were worried about protecting their homes and family.”

Irene hit the coast of North Carolina on Saturday morning as a Category 3 hurricane, moved up the coast, and became a tropical storm by the time it reached Connecticut and Rhode Island.

But many consumers along the East coast lost power and, as of Thursday morning, several were still without electricity. In New England, Connecticut Light & Power customers received messages that they may not have power until Sept. 8.

In Rhode Island, about 81,000 customers are still without power, while about 130,000 Long Island Power Authority customers are still in the dark in that part of New York. In North Carolina, there are still about 34,000 consumers without power.

Here’s how US-Mattress.com’s traffic declined in the hurricane-affected states:

State

Traffic decline

Rhode Island

-57%

Connecticut

-51%

New Jersey

-47%

Delaware

-37%

Virginia

-35%

New York

-34%

Vermont

-33%

Maryland

-32%

Pennsylvania

-28%

New Hampshire

-22%

North Carolina

-24%

Maine

-22%

South Carolina

-21%

Massachusetts

-16%

Florida

-8%

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